AUCKLAND, New Zealand (AP) — Independent lawyers appointed by Yachting New Zealand say two Kiwis punished in one of the biggest scandals in America’s Cup history shouldn’t face further discipline.
The two lawyers made the recommendations in the cases of Oracle Team USA grinder Matt Mitchell and shore crew member Andrew Walker, who were among the syndicate employees punished by an international jury for the illegal modification of boats used in warmup regattas.
Mitchell was barred from the first four races of the America’s Cup match against Team New Zealand and Walker was expelled.
The lawyers also criticized the international jury for procedural shortcomings, using indirect evidence and asking leading questions.
Despite being docked two points by the jury, Oracle staged one of the greatest comebacks in sports to defeat Team New Zealand.